Don’t get too hungry or too angry. Either one can cause you to abandon ship and ditch your healthy eating plan for a sugar binge. The sugar and carbs give an immediate rush of comfort, but then it is over. You feel rotten and the problem is still there — a situation drug and alcohol users know all about.
The third part of the acronym, H.A.L.T., is “L” for lonely. Don’t get too lonely. When you feel isolated and alone, you think, “Who cares what I look like anyway? I might as well as enjoy myself.”
There are some serious things wrong with this dangerous thought pattern. For one thing, we aren’t focusing on how we LOOK anyway, remember? We are going for something Beyond Gorgeous — a healthy, vibrant, active, fulfilling life. It matters how you FEEL — and binging is going to make you feel lousy physically and feel like a failure emotionally. The comfort food isn’t really going to comfort you, anyway. When the bag of chips is empty, you will still feel lonely.
So let’s figure out how to avoid the too lonely trap. We all feel isolated at times. If emptiness has taken over your life, though, it’s time to do something about it. Maybe you need to enlarge your world and get involved. Click here to read about things that are fulfilling — not just filling.
There are lots of people in the world who are lonelier than you are. Drop in at any nursing home and you will find them aplenty. If you have evenings when you are by yourself and bored, try dedicating some time to visit in a nursing home. Perhaps you have a skill to teach like knitting or painting. Ask for the activities director and offer to help. Just sitting and chatting — or listening — can make you an answer to prayer to some forgotten person.
When I visited a little girl from our church in the Children’s Hospital, I found another need. The sound of crying echoed down the hallway. I learned from my friend that this sobbing two-year-old boy had heart surgery and was in pain — and alone. Although his family lived nearby, they didn’t come to visit him. He was there, hurting and afraid, with no one to comfort him. The nurse told me that is often the case. Often children are left by themselves. Sometimes the families live too far away to come and stay, sometimes they don’t care, and sometimes the children are in the foster care system and have no parents. She also told me that the hospital is always looking for volunteers to sit with kids to give comfort.
Those are just two examples of ways to get involved. You can do something simpler, like looking up old friends and giving them a phone call or inviting the new members from church over to get acquainted.
The Bible says, “He that hath friends must show himself friendly.” (Proverbs 18:24) Take that as your watchword. Reach out to people instead of waiting in solitude for them to reach out to you. You’ll find that you don’t need the cookies. You won’t be too lonely.